Although you may have never heard of Algonquin, you sure do know the essence of the place. At 7650sqkm this is Ontario’s first and largest park and it represents everything you know about Canada’s great outdoors.
Idyllic mountains, towering pines, glimmering lakes, and a landscape that morphs with the seasons. Reaching from the water to the sky there are so many ways to experience Algonquin Park. We’ve assembled our top five picks.
CANOE BELIEVE THIS?
Thanks to the many waterways, if there is one adventure activity that Algonquin owns its canoeing. Enjoy a slow paddle with Algonquin Outfitters to reconnect with nature or go for the thrills on an exhilarating whitewater adventure.
With the Canadian gung-ho attitude there are, of course, other ways to experience life on the water. Motorboat, paddleboat, paddleboard or water ski – you can even rent a Rave Bongo for the day! Nope, this isn’t the name for a bad wedding band but a water trampoline for the ultimate family fun.
Algonquin allows you to check off many of your Canadian bucket list animals and birds, particularly in winter. And you’ll add ones you didn’t even know about!
While there are no money-back-guarantees, 3,500 moose call Algonquin home so the odds are forever in your favour to spot one. Keep your food locked away from the prying paws of Algonquin’s 2,000-black bear community.
Stay alert for beavers, white-tailed deer, and the elusive wolf packs that reside here. Also, we’re not sure whether to be freaked out or jubilant at the prospect of finding the prehistoric-looking snapping turtle on our path.
While you can day trip from Toronto three hours away, there is a certain charm to the small towns that surround it. Barry’s Bay residents are particularly welcoming, sharing tales over coffee overlooking the stunning Madawaska River.
Equally jovial vibes and lakeside beaches draw visitors to Huntsville. If you’ve time to enjoy more than the town’s proximity to Algonquin, explore Huntsville’s museums or go zip lining at Treetop Trekking.
TAKE A HIKE
Walking in Algonquin is as common an Ontario activity as eating poutine. For day hikes, there are 20 interpretive trails designed to showcase different aspects of the park. Our picks are the views on the 10 kilometre Centennial Ridges hike and Beaver Pond Trail for the wildlife feels. If you’re into showing your strength with a backpack in tow, there are longer trails from 6-77 kilometres long.
WATCH THIS SPACE
One of the most magical aspects of spending time in Algonquin Park is the night sky. Due to the lack of light pollution, you can fully appreciate the majestic beauty of outer space and our expansive, star-filled night sky. If you’re lucky, aurora borealis, aka the Northern Lights, may dance across Algonquin’s night sky in fall and spring.
For more information visit www.keepexploring.com.au